15 APR | UPSC Current Affairs: World Cybercrime Index Ranks Top Cybercrime Hotspots

World Cybercrime Index

News: The first ever ‘World Cybercrime Index’ was recently published in the journal PLOS ONE.

World Cybercrime Index:

  • The first ever ‘World Cybercrime Index’, identifies the globe’s key cybercrime hotspots by ranking the most significant sources of cybercrime at a national level.
  • The index was developed through a collaborative effort between the University of Oxford and UNSW Canberra.
  • The Index data comes from a survey of 92 top cybercrime experts worldwide who specialize in gathering intelligence and conducting investigations on cybercrime.
  • It ranks roughly 100 countries and identifies key hotspots according to various categories of cybercrime.
  • The five major categories of cybercrime assessed by the study were
        • Technical products/services,
        • Attacks and extortion,
        • Data/identity theft,
        • Scams,
        • Cashing out/money laundering.


  • Cybercrime involves any criminal activity conducted using digital technology.
  • It is estimated that cybercrime costs the world around $9.22 trillion in 2024, and this is expected to grow to $13.82 trillion in 2028.


Key Findings:

  • Russia topped the list with the highest cybercriminal threat and was followed by Ukraine, China, the US, Nigeria and Romania.
  • North Korea was at the 7th position, while the UK and Brazil were at the 8th  and 9th positions, respectively.
  • India ranked number 10 in cybercrime, with frauds involving people to make advance fee payment being the most common type.
  • The researchers also found that certain kinds of cybercrimes were associated with particular countries.
        • For example, the United States was associated with data and identity theft, while those related to technical products or services seemed to often originate from China.
  • Among the top ranking countries, some “specialise” in cybercrime types with middling technical complexity(data and identity theft), others “specialise” in both high-tech and low-tech crimes.
          • India was found to “specialise” in scams.
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